On that fateful day of March in 44 B.C., Julius Caesar, the Roman "dictator for life," met his stunning demise: assassination by just about every one of his colleagues. Every one, that is, except Mark Antony, his right-hand man. Antony was outside the Senate building involved in a “long enough” conversation. It is said that the conspirators purposely distracted Antony so that he would not take his seat next to Caesar and thereby interfere with the assassination.
While many might gain something from Caesar’s death, two men had quite a bit more to gain: the very young Octavian, nephew to Caesar, who was to inherit his fortune and his position (but prior to death of Caesar even Octavian had no inkling he was to be his heir), and, Caesar's top general, Mark Antony, who may well have thought he himself would inherit Caesar’s fortune and position. Mark Antony was at that age of now or never, a man just over the age of forty, and if Caesar lived, then Antony was doomed to a subservient role for the rest of his life. Every year that ticked by would increase Octavian’s age, power, and relationship with Caesar while Antony would steadily continue to lose more and more ground as he aged.
Will there be an Ides of March (figuratively speaking one would hope) in the next U.S. election? It will be a fascinating year of politics and history may repeat itself in our country in some form or fashion. Rome and Washington DC may not be so far apart in either political thinking or time as we think. Beware the Ides of March, my fellow countrymen, and cast your votes well!